November 20, 2014, KLEINBURG ON – The McMichael Canadian Art Collection has unveiled to the public the exhibition Eyes on Quebec: Treasures from the Andrée Rhéaume Fitzhenry and Robert Fitzhenry Collection, showcasing the art of Quebec and early Canadian modernism through an exceptional and rarely seen private collection that has now been gifted to the McMichael.

The exhibition is dedicated to the memory of Andrée Rhéaume Fitzhenry, whose passion for Canadian art and sense of connection to her native Quebec were the driving force behind a collection that includes important works by Marc-Aurèle de Foy Suzor-Coté, Clarence Gagnon, Marc-Aurèle Fortin, Robert Wakeham Pilot, Jean Paul Lemieux, Paul-Émile Borduas, and Jean Paul Riopelle, among others.

“The McMichael has done a truly amazing job exhibiting the collection that Andrée and I built together,” said Robert Fitzhenry. “Were she here, I know she would have been very pleased. The McMichael possesses a wonderful collection of historical Canadian art housed in an intimate setting, making it the perfect fit for our collection long-term.”

The promised gift of fifty works represents a significant addition of Quebec art to the McMichael Collection in both the number and quality of the works. A full gallery space in the exhibition highlights the works of renowned Quebec artist Jean Paul Lemieux, including three paintings from the permanent collection of the McMichael and eight from the Fitzhenry Collection, all of which were created at the height of Lemieux’s artistic development. The gift also features watercolours and works on canvas by Marc-Aurèle Fortin, the first works by the celebrated Quebecois painter to be added to the McMichael Collection.

“The McMichael is deeply honoured by Mr. Fitzhenry’s remarkable gift, and delighted by the opportunity to showcase and preserve such an exquisite collection,” said Dr. Victoria Dickenson, Executive Director and CEO of the McMichael. “The gallery owes its existence to the vision of Robert and Signe McMichael—a vision that continues to be nurtured and upheld by collectors who share the couple’s passion for Canadian art. The extraordinary generosity of individuals like Mr. Fitzhenry is vital to the growth and success of our country’s cultural institutions. This promised gift complements and builds upon the works by Quebec artists included in the McMichael’s permanent collection.”

Comprised of more than sixty works spanning a period of over 100 years, ranging from Marc-Aurèle Fortin’s soft, lyrical depictions of the Quebec countryside to Jean Paul Riopelle’s raw abstract canvases, Eyes on Quebec explores three distinct themes—the figure, the landscape, and modernism and abstraction.

The selection of works speaks not only to the depth and scope of artistic expression in Quebec but also to the diversity in style and subject matter as chosen by Andrée Rhéaume Fitzhenry and Robert Fitzhenry, and their commitment to the artists who inspired them.

The exhibition and accompanying publication are made possible thanks to the generous support of The Andrée Rhéaume and Robert Fitzhenry Family Foundation.

Eyes on Quebec is on display at the McMichael until February 1, 2015.

Media wishing to view the exhibition are requested to contact Rachel Weiner, Media Relations and Communications Coordinator, 905.893.1121 ext. 2210 or by email [email protected].

Group Tours:

Eyes on Quebec

Available November 8, 2014 to February 1, 2015

Fee: $15 per person. A minimum of 15 participants is required. For smaller groups, a base charge will apply. Available in French and English.

For more information or to book, contact Michael Brown at 905.893.1121 ext. 2536 or email [email protected].

About the McMichael Canadian Art Collection

The McMichael Canadian Art Collection is an agency of the Government of Ontario and acknowledges the support of the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport, and the McMichael Canadian Art Foundation. It is the foremost venue in the country showcasing the Group of Seven and their contemporaries. In addition to touring exhibitions, its permanent collection consists of almost 6,000 artworks by Canadian artists, including paintings by the Group of Seven and their contemporaries, as well as First Nations, Métis and Inuit artists. The gallery is located on 100 acres of northern landscape and hiking trails at 10365 Islington Avenue, Kleinburg, north of Major Mackenzie Drive in the City of Vaughan. For more information:

Media Contact:

Rachel Weiner

Media Relations and Communications Coordinator

McMichael Canadian Art Collection

905.893.1121 ext. 2210

[email protected]